• synonyms


noun Chemistry.
  1. any of three oily, colorless, water-insoluble, flammable, toxic, isomeric liquids, C8H10, of the benzene series, obtained mostly from coal tar: used chiefly in the manufacture of dyes.
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Also xy·lol [zahy-lawl, -lol] /ˈzaɪ lɔl, -lɒl/.

Origin of xylene

1850–55; < Greek xýl(on) wood + -ene
Also called dimethylbenzene.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for xylol

Historical Examples of xylol

  • Balsam and dried oil are best removed from the brass parts with xylol.

    A Manual of Clinical Diagnosis

    James Campbell Todd

  • The film of ink may be covered with a long cover-glass and xylol balsam as a permanent preparation.

  • Place a large drop of xylol balsam on the section and carefully lower a cover-glass on to the balsam.

  • Treat with a mixture of equal parts of aniline oil and xylol until no more colour comes away.

  • Wash with ammonia-free distilled water, dry thoroughly and mount in xylol balsam.

British Dictionary definitions for xylol


  1. another name (not in technical usage) for xylene
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  1. an aromatic hydrocarbon existing in three isomeric forms, all three being colourless flammable volatile liquids used as solvents and in the manufacture of synthetic resins, dyes, and insecticides; dimethylbenzene. Formula: C 6 H 4 (CH 3) 2Also called: xylol
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for xylol



1851, from Greek xylon "wood," which is of unknown origin, + -ene.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

xylol in Science


[zī-lēn, zīlēn′]
  1. A flammable hydrocarbon obtained from wood and coal tar. Xylene consists of a benzene ring with two methyl (CH3) groups attached, and occurs in three isomeric forms. It is used as a solvent, in jet fuel, and in the manufacture of dyes, fibers, perfumes, and films. Chemical formula: C8H10.
  2. A mixture of xylene isomers used as a solvent in making lacquers and rubber cement and as an aviation fuel.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.